Scoliosis, a curvature of the spine that can affect growth and development, is treatable in a variety of ways, including through the use of back braces and surgery. Making the proper diagnosis of Scoliosis is important, as is determining the degree of the curvature, as this information is utilized in determining the proper treatment. When caught early, scoliosis treatment is often non-invasive.
Diagnosis of scoliosis usually begins one of two ways, with either the recognition of early symptoms or by the patient being flagged during a screening or yearly physical. Early symptoms of scoliosis include:
- Abnormalities in the shoulder blades, including shoulder blades an uneven width from the spine and shoulder blades sticking out different amounts from each other
- Uneven presentation of the hips
- Back pain
- Difficulty breathing not associated with lung diseases, caused by a narrowing of the lung cavity
When these early symptoms are recognized, the patient might be referred to a specialist for further evaluation and for imaging. X-Rays are the most common imaging tests used to confirm scoliosis, though additional tests might be ordered to determine the cause of the curvature. Additional tests might also be undertaken to rule out other diagnoses, including Turner Syndrome and Muscular Dystrophy.
Scoliosis can worsen over time, and the consequences of leaving the disease untreated can be significant, including damage to the musculoskeletal system. It is important that a doctor properly evaluate the patient when initial symptoms present, and that proper tests be ordered immediately.
If you or someone you love suffered due to a delayed or missed diagnosis of Scoliosis, you are well aware of the long-term health problems associated with failure to treat promptly. Please, consult with an experienced attorney regarding your case, and hold the medical establishment responsible for the missed diagnosis.